Spasmodic everything entry ~ Ham Pie Sandwiches

29 September 2010

Spasmodic everything entry

OK OK! We are going to NY in two days and I am going to write something about food or be forever behind and/or holding my peace.

(I am SO BUSY this year, I tell you what. OH. Anyway.)

Tiny tomatillos from the farmer's market! These dudes were smaller than a ping-pong ball, and occasionally PURPLE. So exciting! I made them into a pretty ordinary (yet delicious!) salsa verde, which I have put on nearly every taco I've eaten since. I have eaten plenty of tacos since.

Ok, one thing our year and a half/two years/whatever in Brooklyn did was seriously improve my Mexican cooking skills. I am very, very happy to be able to eat at the real taquerias and semi-upscale Puebla places around here, but I have to admit that a whole lot of my street Mexican food has risen to surprising levels. My refried beans are excellent and full of peppers, don't come topped with gloppy cheese, and are available in either black or pinto varieties. Corn tortillas blackened over the flame are now our default (although I must admit that the tortillas at the restaurants around here are pretty sublime). I have a pot of pinto beans boiling downstairs right now! Lo, I will either make refried beans tomorrow or put them in the freezer, and then we will have a massive amount of supplies ready for us when we arrive home late Tuesday afternoon, fresh from six hours in the air, another hour on the Caltrain, and a final walk home.

One thing we may have to do in NY is go to Greenpoint, eat the tacos there, and make a sincere comparison with recently-eaten California fare to determine their actual legitimacy as tacos.


John had to go to Atlanta a couple weeks ago for work. While he was gone, I did the usual: I made food I knew he would hate, and did so while he was out of range of taste or smell. This time my main subject was cilantro. (Yeah, we can discuss just how awesome my Mexican street food can be without cilantro all you want, because it's pretty good.)

Anyway. I think cilantro is ok in general and awesome in specific applications, such as in inside-out sushi rolls with yellowtail and jalapeno. So I decided to experiment to figure how just how much I liked it.

For the record, cilantro and avocado on top of pureed carrot-cumin-white bean soup is not the best combination. Now, if I'd had the presence of mind to make sweet potato soup, I'm almost entirely sure I would have declared the business a success. However, I'd already used up that combination for the week by baking and mashing a sweet potato, mixing it with chopped cilantro, labneh, and I think green onion, salting and peppering it, and twice-baking the whole shebang in a little pyrex dish, as the potato skins had totally collapsed. This had just about the same result as the soup, though: palatable, and fine, but slightly weird. It was also shockingly unphotogenic. Oh well.

I will say that sauvignon blanc over a glass of sliced green plums is an excellent combination, however.

Then I scrambled some cilantro into eggs, along with a pan of mixed softened peppers, tomatoes, and chard. This one was a much more obvious success. I still had plenty of salsa and avocado to work with (or, in the avocado's case, get rid of before it died), so they piled on too, making this one of the most crowded burritos in all burrito history.

It was still good.

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